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Case Study: Gold Coast Cabs

Gold Coast Cabs problems solved by Mercury IT

When you are one of the leading cab companies in Queensland, being able to efficiently take calls and transport your customers to their destination is your number one goal.

Unfortunately, for Gold Coast Cabs its systems let the business down in periods of peak demand. Its current technology featured a lot of legacy infrastructure which was added progressively over the last few years.

As a result, this was causing outages during long weekends and over special event weekends like the V8 Supercars. Gold Coast Cabs run a 24/7 call centre operation that must always been online and available so staff can process bookings and redirect taxis.

Martin O'Riordan, Gold Coast Cabs CEO for six years, explained the business was expanding fast. However, hiring out technicians each time the phone or dispatch lines went down, began to impact on operations.

"We needed to find a solution to all of those issues and have more managed infrastructure as there is was a lot of basic devices rather than managed switches," he said.
"It was a rather important situation that needed to be addressed."

Contact with Mercury IT

On advice from its telecommunications provider, Telstra, Gold Coast Cabs was referred to Mercury IT.

Following an initial inspection of the firm's infrastructure, Mercury IT found three unmanaged switches in the call centre 'data room' which were all linked together incorrectly. These were then linked back to another unmanaged switch in another room which then connected down to the main server room.

Mr O'Riordan was pleased with how quickly Mercury IT could identify and begin to plan upgrades.

"We immediately found that they knew what they were talking about and wanted to provide solutions for us, not just sell us components," he said.

As a result of this initial contact, Gold Coast Cabs decided to work with Mercury IT immediately.

Mercury IT removed all the switches and replaced them with Cisco Managed Switches to create 'Core', 'Distribution' and 'Access' layers which can handle the different network traffic correctly. A number of other technologies were implemented on the switches allowing the system to shut down access for single machines or devices that could cause outages or performance issues.

Move to bigger premises

Even before Mercury IT had stepped in, Gold Coast Cabs had decided to move its operations to support growth.

After assisting Gold Coast Cabs to get to the point where it could move its premises adequately, Mercury IT went about implementing new tools and strategies. This would ensure that the move had limited downtime as well as having the technologies to support a bigger call centre.

For this process, Mercury IT worked alongside Gold Coast Cabs to select a new phone system which could handle larger volumes and built a virtual environment to allow for rapid expansion as well as redundancy.

The team also implemented Fully Redundant diverse path fibre connections for Voice, Internet and private links. If a single fibre link became unavailable, or accidentally unearthed during construction, the remaining Fibre Optic link would handle all the incoming calls and data.

Limited downtime

Gold Coast Cabs were impressed how little downtime there was during the significant move.

"Mercury IT project managed it and did the whole thing, we had about half an hour worth of downtime for the whole move for a 24/7 operation," Mr O'Riordan explained.

"That downtime was physically just because of the turning off the links in one area and redirecting phones to the other, so it was very well done."

Mercury IT was in constant consultation with all stakeholders to make sure that data centre setup and servers were tailored specifically to the scope and size of Gold Coast Cab's operations. If anything did go wrong, there was technologies in place to ensure the enterprise can keep providing its customers with the exceptional service and response time it is renowned for.

Benefits of working with Mercury IT

Gold Coast Cabs has been able to continue expanding in the market with the knowledge that Mercury IT has its systems constantly monitored.

The firm has brought on more customers and are now a call centre hub for other cab companies. Other firms now route their calls through Gold Coast Cab's infrastructure, which has established them as an industry leader in Queensland.

Mr O'Riordan believes its customer service has also dramatically improved with the assistance of Mercury IT.

"They take all of the angst out of IT and make sure it does what it is suppose to do which is to support your business and supply you with the tools to complete your day-to-day work," he explained.

"IT is not the main part of our business, it is the thing that supports all of the other operations. We transport people around the Gold Coast, but we are heavily reliant on our systems to do that."

Recommendations

Gold Coast Cabs recommend any SME business having trouble with its infrastructure and are looking to expand to consider Mercury IT.

"The biggest [benefit] from a business point of view is that everything just works. That's what you are looking for as a business person, as a company. You just want your IT systems to work and that's what it does," Mr O'Riordan concluded.

"We actually think of Mercury IT as our IT department. They know what we do, not just our IT system, but what our business does."

How Mercury Helps

"The biggest [benefit] from a business point of view is that everything just works. That's what you are looking for as a business person, as a company. You just want your IT systems to work and that's what it does,"

Martin O'Riordan, Gold Coast Cabs CEO